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Ph.D. Assistantship Assistantship: Evaluating Effects of Waterbird Habitat Management on Coastal Wetland Sustainability

Ph.D. Assistantship Assistantship: Evaluating Effects of Waterbird Habitat Management on Coastal Wetland Sustainability

Baton Rouge, LA

LOCATION: School of Renewable Natural Resources, Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge, LA

NATURE OF WORK: The Ph.D. student will evaluate the sustainability of using water control structures to improve habitat for wintering waterbirds.  Field research will focus on the Marsh Island Refuge ( but may include other coastal marshes.  Marsh Island’s wetlands have been the subject of research since the 1940’s; water control structures have been used there since the 1950s.  The student will compare marshes with and without water control structures (constructed in 1993) regarding vertical accretion, vegetation, water level, and water salinity to evaluate how marsh management interacts with marsh loss processes.  Research may be expanded to include carbon storage, waterbird use, nekton use, etc.  Routine duties will include data collection, data analyses, and manuscript preparation.  The assistantship does not require teaching. 

The student will work under the direction of John “Andy” Nyman, who has co-authored 84 peer-reviewed publications that span waterbird ecology, waterfowl habitat management, wetland vegetation, wetland soils, wetland fish, and wetland restoration including chapters addressing coastal wetland management in the 6th, 7th, and 8th editions of Techniques Manuals published by TWS.  LSU’s School of Renewable Natural Resources was established in 1926 as LSU’s Department of Forestry; its graduate students have been studying coastal marshes since the 1960s.  RNR faculty currently support ~60 graduate students working throughout North and South America, which provides a rich intellectual environment. 

QUALIFICATIONS: Education:  Required:  MS that focused on wetland wildlife, wetland vegetation, wetland soils, or related biological fields.  Preferred:  as above but focused on coastal wetlands.  Experience:  Previous experience in field research in wetlands is required; experience in coastal wetlands is preferred.  Required experience includes working well independently and working well collaboratively within teams.

SPECIAL OR PHYSICAL QUALIFICATIONS: The position requires driving/boating for long periods, working in adverse weather, and heavy lifting of items up to 50 lbs.  It sometimes in necessary to work > 8-hours/day and to be away from Baton Rouge 4-5 days at time, which can be an extra burden on people with pets and/or children. 

SALARY AND BENEFITS:  The assistantship pays a salary of $26,000/annually, tuition and fees.  Health benefits are not provided. 

APPLICATION DEADLINE:  15 Oct, 2022 or until suitable candidate is located.

DATE AVAILABLE:  The position is available in Jan 2023 but must be filled by Aug 2023.

APPLICATION PROCEDURE:  Additional pre-application information can be obtained by emailing  Apply by emailing a cover letter and resume to using the subject “Marsh Island PhD”

Additional Info

Job Type : Full-Time

Education Level : Masters

Experience Level : Not Applicable

Job Function : ""

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